Teaching Kids: How to Study

Nannies as Homework Helpers

For nannies of older children, helping them develop good study habits is an essential responsibility. By ensuring that the children learn how to effectively study, nannies can help prepare children for academic success.

By instituting a homework schedule, nannies can teach their children how to organize their time and prioritize schoolwork. Some children study best right after school and others need a break and a snack before hitting the books. Once a nanny has identified what study time seems to work best, she can help the child institute a study schedule.

Ensuring that the study area is conducive to studying is another way nannies can help children develop solid study habits. A designated study area with good lighting and few distractions is the best option. Study stations that are set in the midst of clutter or facing a window can be distracting. Instead opt for a location that organized and tidy, has all of the necessary materials handy and is free from foot traffic, television or other distractions.

While nannies should not do their charges homework for them, they should certainly be available and present to answer questions, provide clarification and offer guidance, when appropriate. Nannies of younger children may check their homework and ensure that it is done accurately and properly. Nannies of older children may help them studying by verbally quizzing the children on spelling words or by asking questions related to reading comprehension.

In some employment arrangements, nannies are responsible with providing tutoring services. In these instances, nannies must be well informed of the tutoring goals. Meeting with the child’s teacher to gauge what areas are best focused on can often be beneficial.

Since children have different learning styles, nannies should work to discover how the child in their care learns and studies best. Once their style is discovered, nannies can help children maximize their study time by incorporating tools that best integrate with the child’s learning style. If a child learns best by hearing, creating a song to memorize multiplication tables may be more effective that using flashcards.

Nannies should always encourage children to fully apply themselves to their schoolwork and reinforce the importance of good effort and academic success.

10 Tips for Teaching Children to Study

Every adult wants the children in their care to do well in school. Unfortunately, there isn’t always a lot of time spent teaching children how to study in order to do well. You can change that for a child by getting involved and being proactive with helping him learn good study habits. Here are a few tips to get you started.

  1. Get organized – The first thing you will want to do is get your child organized. Talk with the child and find out what they need. What supplies do they need? Do they need any special materials?
  2. Organize the study space – If possible find a dedicated study space; this can be in their room or at the kitchen table or any other space that works. If they have to be mobile, consider getting a basket or bin to hold everything in.
  3. Understand your child’s study style – Many adults assume that children need absolute silence in order to get anything done. While many children do work best under those circumstances, others need background noise in order to focus their attention on the books. If a child is listening to music or has the TV on while studying, don’t assume they are wasting time; for these children a quiet study environment may not be the best for them.
  4. Help your child find the best way to take notes – Note taking is important in class and when studying. Get familiar with the different styles of taking notes and work with the child to find out what method or methods work best for them. Among the most common are: outlines – especially good where there is a lot of information that needs to be broken down into smaller pieces; web notes – making connections between pieces of information; bullets – good for smaller less connected bits of information; Venn diagrams – good for making contrast and comparisons and also known as “T” charts.
  5. Get familiar with the text book – When studying from books, have a child get familiar with the text and how it’s structured. Does it have pictures or charts with captions? Sections with titles in bold letters? Pay attention to words or phrases in bold or italicized letters. Also study charts and graphs. Read all the captions. If there is a review or summary at the end of the chapter pay special attention to it, as it usually contains all the main points of the chapter material.
  6. Read with intention – The first reading of material should be with the intention of getting an overview of the information. Then go over the information again this time paying special attention to captions, sidebars, graphs, charts, etc. Have the child take notes on pertinent information. The first few times you may want to review her notes to make sure they are picking up on the key points.
  7. Review – After reading and taking notes it’s time to review. Reviewing the information will help in retention.
  8. Prepare for tests – Have the child find out what information will be on the test, then concentrate studies on those areas. Review end of chapter summaries or notes. If it’s math or science, do end of chapter problems. If there are incorrect answers either at the end of the chapter or on homework, these will indicate areas where extra study is needed.
  9. Flash Cards – Use flash cards to learn new words or math problems.
  10. Model good habits for your child – When a child sees you reading, attending to business and doing things in a timely manner, you will be making an impression on the child and reinforcing the kinds of behavior you would like them to develop.

While each child will study best under different circumstances, these tips can point you in the right direction for helping a child learn to maximize his study time and discover what study style suits him best.


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